Chelsea midfielder Cesc Fabregas has revealed that former club Arsenal rejected the chance to re-sign him during the summer transfer window due to being overstocked in his position.
Fabregas came back to haunt his former club by setting up Diego Costa for the Blues' second goal in their 2-0 Premier League win over the Gunners at Stamford Bridge on Sunday.
The build-up to the match had surrounded Fabregas, who had the option to join Arsenal in the summer only for the north London club to turn down the opportunity and allow the 27-year-old to join Chelsea, where he has flourished with seven assists in seven league starts.
Speaking to Spanish radio station COPE, Fabregas said: "I've always played in clubs where I wanted to play. At the end of last season I saw Chelsea as the best option. I always thought about a return to England, and I talked to [Jose] Mourinho and realised this was the best option.
"[Arsene] Wenger was already covered with Ozil, Cazorla, and Wilshere, and so I was less needed [to fill a midfield] position, so I decided to go to Chelsea. Arsenal had an option, but they told me they had similar players in my position."
Though Arsenal have a wealth of options at their disposal in midfield and signed Alexis Sanchez during the summer transfer window, Fabregas's form this season and his impressive display last weekend has highlighted the risk of allowing the player to join one of their closest rivals.
The former Barcelona youth product has spoken of how a personal approach from Chelsea boss Mourinho convinced him to move to west London after being rebuffed by his former club.
"It was arranged through my agent," he added. "There was no call with Mourinho, just a face-to-face meeting.
"If I had not had confidence [in Chelsea] I would not have been talking with [Mourinho]. [Jose] showed great respect and convinced me quickly. We were honest, we put aside any history, and I made my decision after talking with him. Overall, I had three options [on the table from] England."